When Heaven Invades Earth: A Book Report
by Aaron Seaney
Bill Johnson walks in the supernatural. So much so that he was actually one of the authors of the book “Walking in the Supernatural: Another Cup of Spiritual Java”. The man lives and breathes the Kingdom of Heaven and in his book When Heaven Invades Earth he explains some of the treasures the Kingdom has for us. Not only that but he equips us with knowledge to unlock those treasures and explains that it is actually the calling of all Christians to share those treasures with the world and by doing so will help fulfill the great commission! The treasures he seemed to focus on the most were the gifts of healing and prophecy, and the means of “activating” those gifts ranged from “true repentance” to a completely new way of approaching our prayer time. He also goes on to explain how using these gifts are a great way to battle the enemy.
First is the gift of healing. Bill Johnson and his congregation at Bethel Church in Redding California have witnessed incredible miracles like broken bones being made whole on the spot and cancer fleeing peoples bodies. They believe that the ability to talk to people about the love of Christ actually comes from the act of showing it. Because of this they have taken a very hands on (and always biblical) approach to ministering to people and have lived a very “Book of Acts” life. Because of this though, I can’t recall a single testimony in this book where some one didn’t come to Christ after they saw the out pour of love and power from this group of Christ followers, this explains why at one point in the very first chapter he says “Jesus heals the whole person”. He doesn’t just come to heal your broken bones or your sickness, he comes into your heart and heals your soul. While most of these specific testimonies came through healings, people were also able to experience this love through prophecy. The gift of prophecy is so incredible when God uses others to speak directly to his loved ones and calls out the treasure they have within them. Most of the time he spoke truth into peoples lives that he had know way of knowing about. This obviously opened the door to sharing the gospel and God’s love to these people. Of course talking about the things he has seen is one thing, but where the book really shines is Bill Johnson’s ability to start pulling out the desire and the “how to” for these gifts from the readers heart.
This starts as early as chapter 3 in “Repent and See” when the opening quote “Most Christians repent enough to get forgiven, but not enough to see the Kingdom” That statement really stretched me and challenged me, but it is a perfect opening statement because honestly the whole chapter stretched me and challenged me! That isn’t to say I disagreed with it, but that it simply made me stop and think and check my own heart. One of Bill Johnson’s talents is to stop the spirit of doubt by backing everything up with scripture. Scriptures like; “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” And would follow that scripture up with profound thoughts like “Repentance means you change your way of thinking. And it’s only in changing the way we think that we can discover the focus of Jesus’ ministry-the Kingdom.” What blew me away when he made statements like that was the self discovery of understanding that I often put my own self into who Jesus is instead of putting who Jesus is into my own self! And that I often pray for just forgiveness instead of praying that I would change my way of thinking to help me not do those things again. Once I grasped that concept the rest of the chapter was much easier to comprehend. In fact the above statement while made very early on in the chapter pretty much summed up the entire idea of repentance to me.
I also really enjoyed his chapter “Praying Heaven Down”. Probably the most important statement of the entire book for me comes from this chapter. While breaking down the “Our Father Prayer” in a way that I have never heard he explains one of the best lessons he, and now I, was ever taught; “..He (Derek Prince) suggested that if we only have ten minutes to pray we should spend about eight praising God. It’s amazing how much we can pray for with the two minutes we have left. That illustration helped me to reinforce the priority of worship that I was learning from my pastor…” It helped me too Bill…it helped me too. Again that was probably the most profound thing I read in the entire book because the idea of worshiping our amazing God instead of coming to him only when we need something just blew me away. And it is something I have been putting into practice for the last couple months and honestly my prayer time has never been better. I no longer come to God with a list but instead with a heart of praise and from that heart the prayer pours out of me. It truly shows where my heart is in those moments.
Finally I couldn’t help but be filled with motivation in the chapter “Warring to Invade!” He makes such powerful statements in this chapter like “We are to be the devil’s worst nightmare.” And “Far too long the Church has played defense in the battle for souls”. Stuff that for me just really stirred me up and made me want to pack my bag and head to Africa to start fighting all the spiritual darkness over there. It also gave me great confidence in my personal life as he reminded me “He (God) leads us only into a battle we are prepared to win” and “When we refuse fear, the enemy becomes terrified. A confident heart is a sure sign of his ultimate destruction and our present victory! Do not fear-ever.” I mean this is the stuff that, not to be sexist, really spoke to me as a man. The idea of battling the devil…and winning in such a grand way! The idea that I have nothing to fear when dealing with the enemy, and therefore it puts me in a more offensive state than a reactive, or more defensive state as circumstances arise in my life.
Overall I found this book to be quite enlightening, and while I quoted some of the easier things to grasp I will say it was one of the hardest books I have read in a while. Multiple statements that he makes I needed to read a few times to truly understand the concept he was trying to convey. This isn’t to scare you away from reading it, I just feel it is a point worth mentioning so you can really prepare your mind as you head into it. This is not a “two day” book, that’s all. With that said this book is one I truly feel all believers need to read. There are so many truths to our lives, how we approach God, how we approach people, and just what is there for us as believers to access. But more importantly, it does a great job of showing us what God wants for us, and not from us.